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Walking in the Kackar Mountains North East Turkey Tour

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Slider 1 Initial region North-East Turkey Kackar
Slider 1 Duration 10 Days
Slider 1 Language English
Slider 1 Price € 1.250 / person
Highlights

Discover a remote and mountainous side of Turkey, trekking in kackar mountains North east Turkey

Marvel at the architectural wonder of the iconic 4th century Sumela Monastery, perched on a cliff edge of Mountain Kackar

 Meet with the friendly but traditional locals who are proud to call these ancient lands their home

Undertake  dramatic walks amongst the heights of the impressive Kaçkar Mountains, Yusufeli, Yaylalar, Mikalis, Barhal

Wander around the eerie ruins of Ani, once a major Armenia city on the Silk Road

Enjoy some wonderful food, sourced locally and directly benefitting the local communities

Visit Armenian Georgian Local Churches, experince etnic music

Itinerary

Day 1 Meeting in Erzurum, City Tour in Erzurum try local Cag Kebap 

The tour starts  in Erzurum, Turkey's highest city at 1900m. After checking in to our hotel we will visit the sites of Erzurum on foot. Erzurum was an important stopping point on the Silk Road and has always been a strategically important border town between empires, be it the Romans and Persians, Byzantines and Seljuk Turks, the Ottoman and Russian empires, or most recently between NATO and the Soviet Union. The hinterland is scattered with fortifications from all ages and is now home to Turkey's finest winter sports facilities at Palandoken. The city is decorated with Seljuk monuments and we will visit the finest of them - the Twin Minaret and the Yakutiye Madrasas. 

Day 2 Erzurum to Kars Visit Ani Explore Kars' Russian architecture 

Leaving Erzurum, heading east, we will arrive at the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Ani. At ground zero of the still closed Turkish/Armenian border, Ani is perhaps one of the most unforgettable sites in Turkey. This powerful Armenian trading centre, lying on an off-shoot of the Silk Road, was well fortified, and was known as the City of 1001 Churches. At its height during the 10th and 11th centuries it was one of the world's largest cities. We will walk this large site taking in the churches, cathedrals and mosques of this tragic but beautiful city, including the 'forbidden zone' fortress right on the Armenian border. We then return to the small city of Kars, with its castle, Armenian church and some very unusual examples of Russian architecture which the town acquired during the Russian occupation. Tonight, there should be the chance to enjoy the local cuisine in local restaurant

Day3 Tuzluca Salt Mine, Seytan Kalesi Trekking Devils Castle Savsat

 Today we head north around the shores of Lake Çıldır. At 2000m of altitude, this lake freezes over in the winter, and is a vital rest stop on this important bird migration route in summer. We continue across the vast Caucasian steppe to the deep ravine system ruled over by 'Satan's Castle' and we walk in the area to appreciate this wonderful spot. While little evidence exists as to who built this castle or when, the foundations are thought to be Hellenistic. Its situation on an outcrop of rock commanding the deep canyon meant the castle was of strategic importance and was continuously occupied until Ottoman times. Having explored the fort, we climb up a steep grassy slope – reasonably challenging as there is no path – to the top of the escarpment where we’ll rest and have our picnic lunch. From here we will walk amongst these impressive mountain landscapes, before continuing on a scenic drive to Şavşat.  Approx. 4.5-6 hrs walking (720m ascent, 846m descent. Total distance 9kms

Day 4 Trekking Savsat Karagol to Velikoy visit Tibeti Church

Today we head into the Karagol (Black Lake) National Park. Blanketed in high upland pastures and dotted with traditional villages and dense forests, the park provides us with a stunning setting for a walk around the lake. A riot of wildflowers in the late spring, the park is a haven for brown bears, who use the autumn falls to forage for fruit in the local orchards. After a lunch where there should be opportunities to try the local trout, we’ll pay a visit to the ruined Georgian church of Tibeti before returning to Savsat. Approx. 4hs hrs walking (564m ascent, 564m descent. Total distance 11kms)

Day 5 Drive Barhal Altıparmak Via Artvin

Departing from Savsat we descend into the flooded valleys of Artvin this morning. A day filled with engineering marvels, we’ll take in the massive structure of the Deriner Dam and the astonishing network of tunnels and viaducts that were built to span the rising waters. Our destination is the remote Georgian monastery of Ishkhani, where we have village-channel walk through the local Icoa village a good chance for us to stretch our legs after the long journey.

Day 6 Trekking Altıparmak 10 km 

Rising above the Black Sea Region, the Kaçkar Mountains represent the easternmost and highest portion of the Pontic Alps. Home to the towering summit of Mount Kaçkar (3937m), this is a stunning setting to explore on foot. After paying a short visit to the nearby Barhal Monastery after breakfast we then set off on a circular walk amongst the high pastures around Altiparmak, a 10 kilometre trek that takes in some of the most spectacular views of the surrounding alps, stopping off at small settlements where we’ll hopefully meet some of the local characters, and take our lunch, before returning to our accommodation. After the walk you probably won’t be able to resist a refreshing dip in one of the rivers clear mountain pools. Approx. 4.5-5.5 hrs walking

Day 7 Trekking Yaylalar Hevek to Mikalis  Modut and Back to Yaylalar Village 

After a 22 km drive from Barhal, we reach Yaylalar Village and check in to our new pansion. Here we start our walk and reach time forgetten summer villages of Black sea region. Starting our slowly ascending trail through Aksav Valley, we will ascend through the Aksav stream in green field and flowers. On our last attempt we will reach a long concave passage to the Modut highland village. This is one of the most popular and alive village in the area. From here we will descend from zig-zag car road to the skirts of Mikalis village. Then we will take a narrow path inside of the planting terraces of Mikalis until we reach to the centre of the village. Our vehicle will be waiting for us on the entrance of the village to take us to our pension. Our dinner is at our pension. Approx. Vehicle Transfer Time: 30 min. Approx. Altitudes: Heveg, 1896 m; Modut Yaylası, 2340 m Approx. Trek Time: 6 hours 30 min.

Day 8 Drive to Trabzon via Ovit Mountain

Driving to the historic market town of Ispir we’ll have time for a short walk amongst the old town – this is a great place to buy local honey or dried fruit – before having our lunch and then continuing on towards the dramatic landscapes of Mt Ovit (3060m) for a memorable ridge walk followed by a drive down to our final destination, Trabzon. Approx. 2-2.5 hrs walking (435m ascent, 435m descent)

Day 9: Maçka - Sumela Monastery - Trabzon

today we head into the densely forested hills to visit the iconic Sumela Monastery. Perched like an eyrie, high up on the sheer cliffs, this Greek Orthodox retreat can trace its antecedents back to the 4th century and the surrounding views make this one of the finest settings in Turkey. Having alighted from the minibus we will trek up through the surrounding forest to the reach the monastery, just as countless monks must have done over the centuries. Inside the monastery the frescoes, both inside and on the outer chapel walls, are exquisite. Following lunch at a riverside restaurant we then drive back to the coastal city of Trabzon, to visit the church of Hagia Sophia, considered by many to be one of the finest examples of Byzantine architecture anywhere. Approx 2hrs walking (300m ascent, 300m descent)

Day 10: Tour ends in Trabzon

Short walking tour of the Old Town of Trabzon and tour ends

 

 

Included

Transport

All transport as required for the tour

 

Guides

The full services of a Wild Frontiers Tour Leader with local guides where appropriate

 

Accomodation

All accommodation as outlined in the itinerary

 

Entrance Fees

All entrance fees for sights mentioned in the itinerary

 

Meals

Meal plan as detailed in the itinerary with the majority of meals being taken in local restaurants where viable

 

Airport transfers

Complimentary airport transfers are included for anyone arriving/departing on the suggested group flights

Excluded

Visas & Travel Insurance
Visas will always be tour/nationality dependent but travel insurance is mandatory

 

Tips
Always optional, but some guidance will be given in the pre-departure information pack you’ll receive after booking

 

International Flights
Please feel free to ask us for an obligation-free quote

 

Beverages & any costs of a personal nature
This will include items such as laundry and souvenirs

Trip Information

TOUR PRICE 

All our tours are priced on a land-only basis, giving you maximum flexibility when deciding how to get to and from your tour. For the latest prices, please refer to our website or contact the office.

1 PAX 4950 €

2 PAX 2400 € PER PERSON

3 PAX 2000€ P.P.

4 PAX 1500 € P.P

5 PAX 1400 € P.P

6 PAX + 1250 €

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